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Fortress America Addenda

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Fortress America

The Forts That Defended America, 1600 to the Present
  • by J.E. Kaufmann and H.W. Kaufmann
    • Illustrated by Tomasz Idzikowski
  • PDF Addenda (not the complete book) of over 400 pages
  • 322 drawings, photographs, maps in printed book plus hundreds more in PDF Addendum
  • PDF Addendum contains all the material - text, maps, drawings, photographs - left out of the printed book by the original publisher

The Spanish Crown built a system of forts and fortresses to protect its ports in the Americas from piracy. The first Spanish fortifications were crude stockades like the one Columbus left behind on Hispanola on his first journey to America, at the settlement of La Navidad. Although Columbus found this fort in ruins on his return, the island of Hispanola—known then as Santo Domingo—became the first base of operations for Spain. Before Cortez sailed for Mexico, early in the sixteenth century, the Spanish moved their main base of operations to Cuba. From that point on, stone fortifications in the form of castillos, fortalezas, or fortins were built at almost every major Spanish port in the Americas. The most important fortress positions were established at Havana, San Juan (Puerto Rico), Vera Cruz (Mexico), and Cartagena (Colombia).


During the next three centuries, each one of these fortified forts would be put under siege or attacked. They represented the largest fortification complexes in the Americas until the French built a formidable fortress at Louisbourg in the eighteenth century, which proved less successful than the Spanish fortresses. The Spanish also built a num­ber of other fortified sites of masonry with relatively modern designs in places such as Campeche, Portobello, Panama City, Santa Marta, Maracaibo, Puerto Cabello, Arraya, and Santiago. All were initially designed to protect the ports from European raiders. Castillo San Marcos was built on the Florida coast to protect the return route to Spain.


When English Sea Dogs, like Sir Francis Drake, and Dutch raiders struck at the west coast of the Americas, the Spanish responded by fortifying the ports in that area with masonry fortifications. Thus were born the complexes at Valdivia, Concepción, and Callao with its Castillo Real Felipe—the largest fort on the west coast—and Acapulco. Further north, on the Mexican coast, the port of San Blas was fortified in readiness for the exploration and settlement of the California coast. The major Spanish fortifications in both North and South America tended to be coastal positions. One the exceptions was the inland Fort Immaculata on the San Juan River in Nicaragua, built to block the water route to Granada.


To advance and secure the landward fron­tier, a line of presidios was established along the northern frontier of New Spain (modern-day Mexico). The first presidios were mostly small castle-like positions built of adobe rather than stone. In the seventeenth and eighteenth century, as the Spanish moved north toward the Rio Grande and then fur­ther north, they built a line of PRESIDIOS that began at Adaes and La Bahia (at Goliad) in eastern Texas, near French Louisiana, and stretched westward into Arizona. Although this line was not solid and more than one of the presidios had to be abandoned, it was the first defensive line of fortifications in the Americas. Usually built of adobe and sometimes stone, these presidios were generally square and were surrounded by a wall. Sometimes the buildings of the presidios formed the outside walls. The Dutch, English, and French laid claim to those islands of the West Indies that had been neglected by the Spanish. The forts, whether earthen and timber or stone, proved of limited value on these islands.


Masonry coastal fortifications in the style of Vauban's First System were found throughout the Spanish, Portuguese, and French empires in South and Middle America during the sixteenth, seventeenth, and early eighteenth centuries. In the remainder of North America (north of the Spanish empire), however, the fortifications were generally made of wood and seldom became impressive before the latter part of the eighteenth cen-tury. Most of these fortifications were built for inland defense and were involved in con­siderable combat. The defenses of the British Thirteen Colonies and New France and Louisiana evolved from simple stockades to more complex forts during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The strategy and outcome of the French and Indian War, the American Revolution, and the War of 1812 were based heavily on these fortifications. To a degree, the same is true of the American Civil War, but after the War of 1812, the empha­sis shifted mainly toward coastal fortifications until the end of World War II for most of the Americas.


After World War II, a radical new type of fortification and defensive system emerged. Lookouts no longer scanned the horizon from blockhouses or towers attached to forts. Instead, new warning systems relied mainly on electronic equipment, in many cases located far from the fortifications and forming warning lines with no defenses. The new concrete fortifications, usually of a subterranean type, no longer had the purpose of defending a coastline or holding a vital piece of territory. Instead, many of them protected weapons of mass destruction that could obliterate an enemy's homeland far away from the fortresses concrete walls.
PDF Addenda on DVD disc
This is Addenda of more than 400 pages is a supplement to the book Fortress America: The Forts That Defended America, 1600 to the Present, published by Da Capo Press in 2004. Most of the content of this work will not be useful without a copy of the Da Capo book.


Frequently, when a manuscript is prepared for publication the editor may delete a large amount of material to fit the needs of the publisher and to keep a project within budget restrictions. This process can result in the removal of a good deal of material. That is what happened in the case of Fortress America. Initially, the project included the fortifications of Latin America, but as the manuscript became too large, and the publisher dropped that material. The original manuscript on the Latin American sections also included the Spanish in Florida and the Southwestern U.S. The sections of the manuscript on Latin America, including the Spanish fortifications in the U.S.A., may be published at a later date and are not included here.

This work contains much of what was deleted from various sections of the text and some complete sections or sidebars the editor had to remove. In addition, the publisher was only able to include a limited number of illustrations. This work includes a number of photos and some drawings excluded from the original project. Unfortunately, illustrations, plans, and maps for all forts mentioned cannot be included and the reader may have to refer to other sources.

Where deleted words, sentences or paragraphs are included in this addendum, they appear in blue with the paragraph (referenced by page number and paragraph number to the Da Capo book) they are part of or follow in black print to help the reader reference the material to the text.

Hopefully, this addendum will help fill in some of the gaps left in the book Fortress America, but the reader is reminded they will need a copy of the Da Capo book for this work to be useful.

Contents of the Printed Edtion (the PDF Addenda supplements this material)
  • Acknowledgements
  • Prologue
  • Chapter 1: New France and Louisiana
    • Fortifying Quebec and Access to the Mouth of the St. Lawrence
    • Forts of the Great Lakes Wilderness
    • The Lower Mississippi and Gulf Coast Forts
    • The Acadia and Lake Champlain/Richelieu River Corridor
    • Fortified Road to the Ohio Valley
  • Chapter 2: The British in North America
    • Early English Colonization: The Southern Colonies
    • English and Dutch Colonization North of the Chesapeake
    • Eighteenth-Century New England Frontier and King George's War
    • The French and Indian War: War of the Forts
    • Other Forts of the Thirteen Colonies
    • Indian Uprising of 1763
  • Chapter 3: The American Revolution
    • The War for Independence Begins
    • The Delaware River Forts of 1777
    • Defending the Highlands of the Hudson
    • Other Fortified Posts and Cities of the American Revolution
  • Chapter 4: Fortifying America: 1783-1815
    • Occupation and Defense of the Northwest Territory
    • Creation of the Army Engineers and the First System of Coastal Defenses
    • The Second System of Coastal Defenses
    • Canada Before the War of 1812
    • The War of 1812
  • Chapter 5: Fortifications of the Expanding Frontiers
    • The Frontier and Foreign Encroachment
    • Seminole Wars and the Forts of Florida
    • Wars of Expansion and New Forts on the Frontier
    • The Third System of Coastal Defenses
    • Some Features of Third System Forts
    • The Challenge of the 1850s
  • Chapter 6: The American Civil War
    • First Actions: Battles of the Forts
    • Western Theater of War 1862
    • The Eastern Theater of War
    • Failure of the Forts in the Western Theater in 1863
    • Clearing the Coast—1863 to 1865
    • In Defense of Washington D.C.
    • In Defense of Richmond
    • Four Fortresses and the Keys to Victory
  • Chapter 7: Post-Civil War Era and Transition
    • Winning the West
    • Canadian Defense Against the United States
    • The Question of Fortifications and Coast Defense
    • The Endicott Board and a New System
  • Chapter 8: The End of Isolation and The Big-Gun Fortifications
    • Change in Fortifications and Weapons
    • The Characteristics of Coastal Fortifications until 1920
    • Modernization of the Coastal Defenses after 1920
    • The Lean Years
    • Preparing for War
    • World War II Comes to America
    • America's "Atlantic Wall"
  • Chapter 9: From Guns to the Missile Age
    • Spreading the Net Antiaircraft Artillery
    • The Soviet Threat and Missile Defense from 1950s to 1960s
    • Defenses for the Offensive Weapons: the ICBMs
    • New Defense Against Missiles
    • Command, Communication, and Security
  • Appendices
    • Important Forts of the French and Indian War
    • Battles of War of 1812 Involving Fortifications
    • 1st and 2nd System Forts 1790-1812
    • Forts of the Bernard/Totten 3rd System
    • Weapons of the Endicott Era for Coast Defense
    • Coastal and Harbor Defenses—1903-1944
    • Harbor Entrance Command Posts 1941 to 1946
    • Major Radars of the Cold War
  • Glossary
  • Bibliography
  • Index
  • Sidebars
    • The First European Fortified Site in North America
    • Native American Fortifications
    • What's in a Fort's Name
    • Creation of the Corps of Engineers
    • The Spanish Conquest of the Floridas: Five Forts that Failed
    • Supplying the Forts: The Quartermaster General's Department
    • The Construction of America's First Frontier Fortifications
    • Details from Henry Dearborn's 1807 Report on Coastal Fortifications
    • Navy Yards
    • The Russian Foothold in America
    • Fort Laramie
    • The Mansfield Report on Frontier Forts in New Mexico and Texas after 1848
    • The Mansfield Report on Frontier Forts in the Pacific Division after 1848
    • Nineteenth-Century Inventions Affecting Defenses
    • First U.S. Arsenals
    • Effects of Artillery Against Brick Walls
    • Mines and Torpedoes of the Civil War
    • Life in the Frontier Forts
    • Questionable Defensive Weapon
    • German Invasion Plans for America
    • Railway Guns for Coast Defense
    • American Coastal Defenses in 1924
    • America's Icebox
    • Army Radar
    • Army Mines, Mine Planters, and Mining
    • Bunkers
  • Maps
    • New France 1750s
    • Island of Cape Breton 1700s
    • French Fur Trading Posts West of the Great Lakes
    • 17th Century North America
    • Jamestown Area After 1608
    • Forts of Colonial America-South
    • Fortifications of Colonial New England
    • Colonial New York Area
    • Halifax 1750s
    • Campaign Against Ft. Duquesne 1754 to 1760
    • French & Indian War
    • Oswego 1750s
    • Attack on Quebec: June-September 1759
    • American Revolution
    • Boston 1770s
    • Defenses of New York City Area during American Revolution
    • Philadelphia Campaign of 1777
    • Siege of Charleston 1780
    • Battle of Yorktown 1781
    • War of 1812
    • Northwest Territory Forts
    • Western Frontier 1800-1846
    • Great Plains Forts
    • Texas and New Mexico 1850
    • West Coast 1850
    • Forts of the East Coast 1860
    • Defense of New York (1850s)
    • Pensacola Bay (1850s)
    • Spring to Summer 1861: Confederate and Union Forts in the South
    • Fort Henry and Fort Donelson
    • Island No. 10 and New Madrid
    • Battle for New Orleans 1862
    • The Hatteras 1860s
    • Siege of Fort Pulaski
    • The Siege of Vicksburg
    • Port Hudson (Civil War)
    • Knoxville 1863-64
    • Nashville (Civil War)
    • Defenses of Charleston 1863
    • Defenses of Washington (Civil War)
    • Defenses of Richmond (Civil War)
    • Siege of Petersburg
    • Harbor Defenses of the U.S. East Coast 1900-1906
    • Harbor Defenses of the U.S. East Coast 1944
    • Oahu (WWII)
    • Radar Lines

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